The Duchess of Cambridge attended the West End revival of the Broadway hit 42nd Street in her role as Royal Patron of East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH). The musical debuted in New York in 1980 and has won several awards. The show is helping to raise money for a vital new purpose-built hospice in Norfolk called The Nook.
The Duchess of Cambridge became the Royal Patron for EACH in 2012, and she has attended several official functions over the last five years. In 2014, she helped launch the appeal for The Nook.
12-year-old Ollie Duell, a patient at EACH presented the Duchess of Cambridge with a programme. Ollie said, “I feel very good about meeting Kate Middleton. She’s very pretty, and I want to talk to her about the hospice and how I like going there. I also want to tell her about Pokemon.”
So far, the charity has received a £250,000 donation as a result of the partnership.
Co-producer Lord Grade said: “The Duchess expressed an interest in coming which is fantastic. It adds to the sense of occasion.”
The Duchess of Cambridge joined a standing ovation. Sheena Easton, who plays Dorothy Brock, said, “It was wonderful — everything I could have dreamed of. Standing in the wings, you get these goosebumps up your body, and the audience have been so receptive. People went crazy at the end. I still get nervous, but I was mostly excited. We’ve had two intense weeks of rehearsals where we fine-tuned it, so we were just raring to get out there.
“It was such an honour to have the Duchess in the audience. We didn’t feel any more pressure, we were just excited she was here, and we can help her with her cause. We were all very flattered. She came backstage and was so encouraging and complimented us on how wonderful she thought the show was.
“It’s one of the best shows around and a wonderful role for a woman my age, and they don’t come around very often.”
Afterwards, the Duchess of Cambridge joined the cast on stage, where she presented with a pair of gold tap shoes.